Thursday, February 19, 2009

Philosophy 118: 30 January, 2009

These notes were taken from my class with Dr. Reyes for Philosophy 118 last 30 January

.:Husserl's Technical Terms:.

Intentionality – There is no consciousness except in relation to the given. There is no given except in relation to the consciousness.

Constitution – The given does not merely imprint upon a passive consciousness what it is. This interaction is what is called constitution.

Natural Attitude – Our attitude in daily life that is mainly concerned with mere practicality.

Epoche – A break from man's natural attitude.

Phenomenon – The meaning that we find after observing the thing while in epoche. Whatever it is that appears to consciousness. It is something that can be experienced.

Eidetic – When you have gone into the epoche and honestly looked through your own experience, you will be able to find things such as the sense of the self. These realizations are not purely subjective.

Noesis-Noema – Noesis is an attitude that corresponds to a particular meaning called Noema. For instance, when you look at a painting, you use a particular noesis of aesthetic valuation and the noema you derive is affected accordingly.

Transcendental Ego – This ego is *not* divine. There will always be a consciousness that subtends every single state, for even asking about the existence of anything before even man existed, it still presupposes a consciousness that is posing this question. It is that which is at the bottom of any experience, saying, even being itself, that cannot but be presupposed.

Consciousness – As such, the consciousness can be broken up into various phenomenon, such as the self, “I am my body”, in relation to the world, in relation to the Thou, in relation to the social, in relation to time, and to history.

As such, Husserl has systematized phenomenology such that at the bottom of everything is consciousness. It is not absolute in that it is divine. It is absolute in that it encompasses everything.

.:Metaphysics vs. Meaning:.

Metaphysical conclusions are a product of logical inference. Meaning is present and can be experienced, even if it is not objectively there. For example, the sense of the human dignity. Is not the middle finger merely an upraised finger among five? Yet it carries with it an insult upon a human person.

Any human person who is honest to himself will find deep in his heart the absolute, and a longing for meaning.

For Aquinas, there are certain universal attributes that are present in every particular instance of a specific class or genius. For instance, all human persons have, say, a sense of humor. There are, however, certain attributes not just in some class or other, but in every being. These are called transcendental attributes: one, true, good, etc.

For Kant, on the other hand, speaks of consciousness, but when Kant says this, he does not pertain to the Cartesian consciousness that closes upon itself, certain only of its own existence, but not much else. Kant's idea of consciousness is open to anything and everything, one that determines or constitutes categories on top of the sense data. In that my consciousness transcends my limitations, then we can say that my consciousness is transcendental. As such, the transcendental consciousness is that which is always presupposed in the human experience. You simply cannot do without it.

.:Quotable Quotes:.

Pare, you're smalling me.”

- Dr. Reyes

“When husband and wife argue, and maybe I'm saying it from experience, one of the worst things in the woman's armament is that they will pretend that you don't exist and completely ignore you.”

- Dr. Reyes

.:The Hermeneutics Of Suspicion:.

Hermeneutics is precisely what colors an entire phenomenon that one experiences, if only for the fact that the same event can be give different interpretations each time it is perceived. This is the nature of hermeneutics, and as such, one can say that there is a certain trend at times we have come to know as the hermeneutics of suspicion.

Think about two of our previous thinkers, Marx and Nietzsche, who are regarded as two of the three “master of suspicion”. Their philosophy is precisely a particular interpretation of the world around them, and their response to the call of the times they find themselves involved in.

We may say this is exactly what it means to have a “hermeneutics of suspicion” in that they viewed everything with wariness. Religion was either thought to be an “opium for the masses”, or an outright fraud, the intentions of people were taken to be not without ulterior motives, and so forth. It is a thinking fraught with second-guessing, doubt, and paranoia, though not entirely unfounded.

Have you ever given any thought to the dangers of a hermeneutics of suspicion? If you were to view anything and everything around you with the kind of contempt and apprehension these men have, how do you think the rest of the world would respond to you in turn?

Think about it.

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